Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Discussion of the past and present operations of the Long Island Rail Road.

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Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby Fan Railer » Sat Feb 28, 2015 9:27 pm

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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby Head-end View » Sat Feb 28, 2015 9:52 pm

So let me get this straight. Brooklyn passengers who have enjoyed the convenience of cross-platform transfers since the present Jamaica complex was built long ago, will now normally have to go up-and-over-and down to change trains? That is a real slap-in-the-face to Brooklyn riders. It stinks! Whose bright idea was this? LIRR/MTA should be trying to encourage ridership, not discourage it by making the commute less convenient than it was for how many years. What cloud are these planners on?

Tool, you've been around awhile. Any thoughts?
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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby vince » Sat Feb 28, 2015 10:55 pm

It's a slap in the face to ALL passengers.

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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby jamestrains1 » Sun Mar 01, 2015 4:40 am

In order to serve both GCT and Penn simultaneously improved capacity is required. Admittedly an "up and over" transfer is less than desirable, but given the system's finite capacity and the MTA's financial resources, this plan seems to be the least worst option available.

The documentation below should provide ample background for discussion:

MTA 2010-2014 CAPITAL PROGRAM QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
http://www.nysenate.gov/files/pdfs/2010-14questions_and_answers_v2.pdf
see pdf pg. 19-20
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Helena Williams Response to NY State Senator Carl Marcellino
26 Jul 2011
http://www.nysenate.gov/files/pdfs/lirranswers.pdf
see pdf pg. 10-11
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Long Island Rail Road Capital Program Capital Program 2010 – 2014
ACEC - June 19, 2012
http://www.acecny.org/~aiwetace/images/stories/documents/members-only/docs-presentations/LIRR.pdf
see pdf pg. 6
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MTA Long Island Committee Meeting
28 Jan 2013
http://web.mta.info/mta/news/books/archive/130128_0930_LIRR.pdf
see pdf pg. 36
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MTA Capital Program Oversight Committee Meeting
28 Jan 2013
http://web.mta.info/mta/news/books/pdf/130128_1330_CPOC.pdf
see pdf pg. 12-15

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MTA Capital Program Oversight Committee Meeting
23 June 2014
http://web.mta.info/mta/news/books/pdf/140623_1345_CPOC.pdf
see pdf pg.52 54
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I found this study to be rather interesting.
Jamaica Interlocking Reconfiguration Operations Simulation
see pdf pg. 2
http://www.apta.com/mc/rail/previous/2014/papers/Papers/Beth%20Kulick%20Reconfiguration.pdf
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Atlantic Terminal accounts for approximately 9.88% of Daily Ridership.
MTA LIRR 2012 Ridership Book
http://transitdocs.com/files/data/lirr/2012RidershipBook.pdf
see pdf pg. 4

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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby inthebag » Sun Mar 01, 2015 7:34 am

What are they going to do with station tracks 3 and 4, as well as Atlantic tracks 1-4? I see Atlantic 4 as a potential 10 car storage track but that's about it.
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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby workextra » Sun Mar 01, 2015 11:01 am

It's not just a slap in the face to the commuters and engineers who designed that marvel of switching and versatility, but rather a testament to excessive faith in text book education. You can't learn or begins to understand Jamaica through a text book.
The simple mind set of today is to straight rail Jamaica and make it more or less a stop then the hub that it is.
You see the limited knowledge mind set in the stack and pack scheduling and difficulty to route trains around trains that are poorly scheduled when you have the capacity and nothing is out of service.

Jamaica could be improved with a south by pass with a Mas of 50-60 through the station, and access if needed to platform "F"
And the remainder left alone. But rebuilt with better rail and moveable frogs switchs where applicable, coded and left to 20 and some straight routes up to 30 mph through the station.

Take a little knowledge to figure that out instead of simply ripping everything out and straight railing it.
Fact is Jamaica does not need "12"Car platforms and if you modify stopping positions you can technically platform 12 cars in more places depending on routing. It just locks out a route or routes until you depart.
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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby NIMBYkiller » Sun Mar 01, 2015 11:36 am

Does anyone know if they're keeping ANY thru-service to FBA? From the looks of this, I'd say no, but I'm not 100% familiar with the track configuration approaching Jamaica from the east. A damn shame since they're pretty much undoing a huge chunk of the capacity boost they're getting with ESA, and at a time where Brooklyn is the fastest growing part of the city. Whose bright idea was this anyway?
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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby Fan Railer » Sun Mar 01, 2015 11:52 am

NIMBYkiller wrote:Does anyone know if they're keeping ANY thru-service to FBA? From the looks of this, I'd say no, but I'm not 100% familiar with the track configuration approaching Jamaica from the east. A damn shame since they're pretty much undoing a huge chunk of the capacity boost they're getting with ESA, and at a time where Brooklyn is the fastest growing part of the city. Whose bright idea was this anyway?

Based on the diagram available, and the proposal in the capital plan, the proposed setup wouldn't exactly allow for thru-service to Brooklyn from east of Jamaica.
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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby SwingMan » Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:10 am

If they want to straight rail thru Jamaica, they need to take Yard E and pretty much make those thru tracks. Once that project is completed, you add on to the structure to the south, or even just create an overbuild partially above Atlantic 2 to create more room to move the tracks so there is a less sharp slope for eastbound trains leaving Jamaica.

However, west will be more tricky. It's such a sharp angle whatever way to try to reconfigure it. I would almost have to believe that would require an incredible project to move the eastbound flyover on a sharper angle thru where Hall stands today. The old viaduct would pretty much be for trains leaving the Advance Yard to tracks 7-8 which would become Jamaica bound diesel tracks?

That's how I see it. It would be a vast undertaking of course, but if people want to create the most optimal thru configuration within the space given, I'd say that anything else will just create minimal enhancement of congestion. Now the build within Hall, the complete regrading on the west end, and total change in dynamic would be a vast undertaking.

Jamaica has charm to it in the way it's run right now, but it doesn't mean they are reaching optimal potential, and if the railroad is serious about not only adding flexibility, but also adding flow to it, then we will see real change.
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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby hrfcarl » Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:43 am

workextra wrote:Jamaica could be improved with a south by pass with a Mas of 50-60 through the station, and access if needed to platform "F"
And the remainder left alone. But rebuilt with better rail and moveable frogs switchs where applicable, coded and left to 20 and some straight routes up to 30 mph through the station.


In relation to improving passing through Jamaica at higher speeds, how about building the proposed platform 'F" or some variation as a replacement for current "C" platform then using the space of "C" to realign tracks 4 & 5 as higher speed bypass tracks feed from "express" tracks (those with no local stops) west and east of the station?

As stated with all the growth of downtown Brooklyn, especially Barclays Center, it makes no sense to remove or even reduce the number of trains that go directly to Atlantic Terminal from points east. As someone who frequently uses service to that terminal, it seems ridership is increasing on those trains.
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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby commuterjoe » Mon Mar 02, 2015 4:27 pm

Given the fact that Downtown Brooklyn will probably become a more heavily used part of the system in future years, would it not have been simpler to keep Jamaica as it is, and modify the interlocking/platforms at Woodside so that it becomes the transfer point for Penn Station, Grand Central, or HPA?
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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby andegold » Mon Mar 02, 2015 7:09 pm

How much of the time saved by faster train movements will be lost due to longer dwell times needed to accommodate the up/over/down transfers?
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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby Fan Railer » Mon Mar 02, 2015 8:25 pm

andegold wrote:How much of the time saved by faster train movements will be lost due to longer dwell times needed to accommodate the up/over/down transfers?

It shouldn't be a big problem during the morning rush for obvious reasons. Inbound trains would just be dropping off transferring passengers at Jamaica, who would then just board the next shuttle to Atlantic Avenue (I'd presume a ~15 minute running interval during rush hours for the shuttle service would be reasonable). The evening rush would be the one to be looking at. Passengers coming in from Atlantic Avenue would have to cross over to the other platforms via the mezzanine to connect to the mainline trains, but honestly, given the nature of the proposed Atlantic shuttle, I doubt dispatch would be holding mainline trains for shuttle connections during the evening rush. You either make the connection, or you wait for the next train.
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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby Andrew Saucci » Mon Mar 02, 2015 8:43 pm

Those diagrams produced by the MTA are horribly misleading. No "conflict" exists west of Jamaica. Brooklyn trains run underneath the eastbound tracks, not across them as the diagram strongly implies. They almost always run to/from tracks 3 and 6, though sometimes in the rush they may find themselves on 2 or 7. The "conflict" is that the railroad feels that it needs the slots currently given to Brooklyn trains for Grand Central trains. Jamaica will remain a hub, but mainly for Penn/GCT transfers. The LIRR would probably like to dump Brooklyn onto the subway system. I am thinking this whole scheme is foolish because they could build the extra platform without a major reconfiguration. They could open GCT first and then see what passengers really want/need before committing to anything.

With the existing configuration, Grand Central, Penn, and Atlantic Terminal trains could meet on tracks 1, 2, and 3 and 6, 7, and 8 just fine, but the railroad seems convinced that this is not a viable approach. The only "straight-railing" that might be necessary would be that Far Rockaway and Long Beach trains would be the Brooklyn trains, while Babylon and Main Line trains could possibly go either to Grand Central or Penn. Oyster Bay trains would need to go to LIC, probably from 3-6, but they actually want to truncate those at Mineola (another questionable scheme).
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Re: Jamaica Reroute Scheme

Postby Tommy Meehan » Mon Mar 02, 2015 9:04 pm

This is very interesting, a real change in store for the Long Island. Someone asked is any through service to Brooklyn planned and the answer seems to be no, none. From the NY State Senate planning document already linked:
The LIRR Cross Borough Scoot will operate between Jamaica and Flatbush Avenue, making all stops (Jamaica, East New York, Nostrand Avenue, and Flatbush Avenue)...All Brooklyn Flatbush services will require a transfer at Jamaica to the new Cross Borough Scoot.


Fan Railer wrote:The evening rush would be the one to be looking at...

I agree and I don't think the plans linked address this. From the APTA Report (already linked):
Additionally, to reduce dwell times, the future operations are predicated on the use of “drop and go” passenger transfers instead of providing scheduled connections.


As stated, concurrent with the inauguration of ESA service there will be an overall increase in train service. I can see "drop and go" working in the AM inbound rush. You come in on a Babylon-NYP train and change at Jamaica to a GCT train. Say that normally it's a Huntington train. On mornings when the Babylon train is a few minutes late the Huntington-GCT train is already gone when you arrive at Jamaica. It doesn't matter. You wait a few minutes and catch the next GCT train. The next GCT train might have originated at Ronkonkoma but that doesn't matter either. You don't care where the train came from just where it's going.

In the outbound PM rush it will matter. Riders can't take any eastbound train, it has to headed to their station. If you just miss a 'drop and go' Long Beach train you might have to wait 10-15 minutes for the next. That might mean also mean a 'double-load' for the next Long Beach train.

The documents so far do not seem to address how the outbound service will be handled so I guess we have to wait and see.
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